The Massachusetts state legislature failed to complete action on a series of bills that would have impacted the automotive hobby. To follow is a brief summary:
Massachusetts H.B. 3149: Legislation to ban the “use and sale of any exhaust pipe that increases the sound emission of any vehicle including motorcycles” died when the legislature adjourned. A hearing was convened in the Joint Transportation Committee on the bill, but no vote was taken. As in previous efforts in the state, the measure did not supply law enforcement a clear standard to enforce for motor vehicles, allowing them to make subjective judgments on whether a modified exhaust system is in violation.
Massachusetts S.B. 1637: Legislation to provide for the issuance of a single registration plate died when the legislature adjourned. No action on the bill was taken by the Joint Transportation Committee. The bill, favored by state hobbyists, required that the single registration plate be attached on the rear of applicable motor vehicles.
Massachusetts H.B. 3142: Legislation to establish a pilot program to impose a vehicle miles travelled tax died when the legislature adjourned. The bill was intended to supplement the gas tax and implement an alternative method to raise revenue for the state. Bills like these seek to penalize national efforts to create a more fuel efficient vehicle fleet. As gas tax revenues decrease due to hybrid and electric vehicle ownership, states are looking for new sources of funding for pet projects.